Monday, June 25, 2018

#Nun Dies with Beautiful Smile and Leaves a Message - RIP Sister Cecilia - SHARE

Sister Cecilia Maria lived in the Monastery of Santa Teresa and San Jose, Santa Fe, Argentina. At 26 she made her first vows as a Discalced Carmelite and reaffirmed her vows in 2003. In January she was diagnosed with tongue cancer then it metastasized to the lungs. This caused her death at age 43.
Before leaving, religious wrote her last wish on a piece of paper:
 "I was thinking how I wanted my funeral. First pray, then make a big party. Do not forget to pray but also to celebrate!. "
The Carmel released this notice:
 Dear brothers, sisters and friends: Jesus! Just a few lines to let you know that our very dear little sister has softly fallen asleep in the Lord, after an extremely painful illness, which she always endured with joy and surrender to her Divine Spouse. We send you all of our affection, thankful for your support and prayer during this time that is so sorrowful and yet also so marvelous. We believe that she flew directly to heaven, but all the same, we ask that you do not fail to pray for her. From heaven, she will reward you. A warm embrace from your sisters of Santa Fe.

Edited from Prensalibre - Images Facebook - Curia Generalizia

Vatican Convicts Former Diplomat for Child Pornography Possession to Prison and Fine - Msgr Carlo Alberto Capella

Vatican convicts former Holy See diplomat for child pornography Monsignor Carlo Capella who served as a councillor at the Apostolic Nunciature in Washington, US, was sentenced to 5 years in prison and €5,000 fine by the Vatican tribunal on June 23.
The Vatican court on Saturday convicted a former Holy See diplomat, sentencing him to five years in prison for the “possession and distribution of child pornography with the aggravating circumstance of its large quantity,” in what is the first trial of its kind inside the Vatican.  Italian Monsignor Carlo Alberto Capella (pictured right with beard) who served as a councillor at the Apostolic Nunciature in Washington, US, admitted to viewing the images during what he called a period of "fragility" and interior crisis. Tribunal President Giuseppe Dalla Torre read out the verdict after a two-day trial and sentenced the 50-year old priest to five years in prison and a fine of €5,000.  
Msgr. Capella, ordained a priest of Milan Archdiocese in 1993, will serve the sentence in the Vatican barracks, where he has been held since his arrest on April 7 after his recall from Washington.
In August 2017, the US state department had notified the Holy See regarding a possible violation of laws relating to images of sexual abuse of children by a member of the Holy See’s diplomatic mission in Washington. 
Police in Windsor, Canada, said they had issued an arrest warrant for him on suspicion of possessing and distributing child abuse images on the internet while visiting a church in Canada.
The Vatican prosecution had called for a stiffer sentence of 5 years and 9 months in prison and €10,000 fine, given what it described as an excessive amount of child pornography material.
Capella’s trial was the first known enforcement of a 2013 Vatican City law that specifically criminalized possession and distribution of child pornography, punishing it with up to maximum of five years in prison and a €50,000 fine. 
The priest said he realized that his actions were vulgar and "improper," and apologized for the pain his "fragility" and "weakness" had caused his family, his diocese and the Holy See.
Text Source: Vatican News 

Pope Francis “Our defense of the innocent unborn, for example, needs to be clear, firm and passionate, for at stake is the dignity of a human life..." FULL Text to Pontifical Academy of Life + Video

Address of the Holy Father
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am glad to address my greeting to you all, starting from the President, Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, whom I thank for introducing me to this General Assembly, in which the theme of human life will be situated in the broad context of the globalized world in which we live today. And also, I wish to greet to Cardinal Sgreccia, ninety years old but enthusiastic and young, in his commitment in favor of life. Thank you, Your Eminence, for what you have done in this field and for what you are doing. Thank you.
The wisdom that should inspire our attitude towards “human ecology” is encouraged to consider the ethical and spiritual quality of life in all its phases. There exists a conceived human life, a life in gestation, a life that has come to light, a child’s life, a teenage life, an adult life, an aged and consumed life – and there exists an eternal life. There is a life that is family and community, a life that is invocation and hope. Just as there is fragile and sick human life, wounded, offended, dejected, marginalized, discarded life. It is always human life. It is the life of human persons, who inhabit the earth created by God and share the common home with all living creatures. Certainly, in the biology laboratories, life is studied with the tools that allow exploring its physical, chemical and mechanical aspects. A very important and indispensable study, but one which must be integrated with a broader and deeper perspective, which calls for attention to the truly human life, which erupts on the world scene with the prodigy of the word and of thought, affections and spirit. What recognition does the human wisdom of life receive today from the natural sciences? And what political culture inspires the promotion and protection of real human life? The “beautiful” work of life is the generation of a new person, the education of his spiritual and creative qualities, the initiation to the love of family and community, the care of his vulnerabilities and his wounds; as well as initiation into the life of children of God, in Jesus Christ.
When we deliver children to deprivation, the poor to hunger, the persecuted to war, the old to abandonment, do not we ourselves, instead, do the “dirty” work of death? Where does the dirty work of death come from? It comes from sin. Evil tries to persuade us that death is the end of everything, that we have come to the world by chance and we are destined to end up in nothingness. Excluding the other from our horizon, life folds back on itself and becomes a consumer good. Narcissus, the character of ancient mythology, who loves himself and ignores the good of others, is naive and does not even realize it. Meanwhile, however, it spreads a very contagious spiritual virus, which condemns us to become mirror-men and mirror-women, who see only themselves and nothing else. It is like becoming blind to life and its dynamic, as a gift received from others and asking to be placed responsibly in circulation for others.
The global vision of bioethics, which you are preparing to relaunch in the field of social ethics and of planetary humanism, strengthened by Christian inspiration, will engage with more seriousness and rigor to defuse this complicity with the dirty work of death, supported by sin. In this way, I may restore to us the reasons and practices of the covenant with the grace destined by God for the life of each one of us. This bioethics will not take illness and death as a starting point in deciding the meaning of life or defining the value of the person. It will rather start from the profound conviction of the irrevocable dignity of the human person, as God loves him, the dignity of every person, in every phase and condition of his existence, in the search for the forms of love and care that must be addressed to his vulnerability and fragility.
So, in the first place, this global bioethics will be a specific way of developing the perspective of integral ecology that is proper to the Encyclical Laudato si’, in which I have insisted on these strong points: “the intimate relationship between the poor and the fragility of the planet, the conviction that everything in the world is connected, the critique of new paradigms and the forms of power derived from technology, the call to seek other ways of understanding the economy and progress, the value proper to each creature, the human meaning of ecology, the need for forthright and honest debate, the serious responsibility of international and local policy, the throwaway culture and the proposal of a new lifestyle” (no. 16).
Secondly, in a holistic view of the person, it is necessary to articulate with ever greater clarity all the concrete connections and differences in which the universal human condition dwells and which involve us, starting from our body. Indeed “our body itself establishes us in a direct relationship with the environment and with other living beings. The acceptance of our body as a gift from God is vital for welcoming and accepting the entire world as a gift from the Father and our common home, whereas thinking that we enjoy absolute power over our own bodies turns, often subtly, into thinking that we enjoy a absolute power over creation. Learning to accept your body, to care for it and to respect its fullest meaning, is an essential element of any genuine human ecology. Also, valuing one’s own body in its femininity or masculinity is necessary if I am going to be able to recognize myself in an encounter with someone who is different” (Laudato si’, 155).
It is, therefore, necessary to proceed with a careful discernment of the complex fundamental differences of human life: of man and woman, of fatherhood and motherhood, of filiation and fraternity, of sociality and also of all the different ages of life. And also, all the difficult conditions and all the delicate or dangerous passages that require special ethical wisdom and courageous moral resistance: sexuality and generation, sickness and old age, insufficiency and disability, deprivation and exclusion. , violence and war. “Our defense of the innocent unborn, for example, needs to be clear, firm and passionate, for at stake is the dignity of a human life, which is always sacred and demands love for each person, regardless of his or her stage of development. Equally sacred, however, are the lives of the poor, those already born, the destitute, the abandoned and the underprivileged, the vulnerable infirm and elderly exposed to covert euthanasia, the victims of human trafficking, new forms of slavery, and every form of rejection” (Apostolic Exhortation Gaudete et exsultate, 101).
In the texts and teachings of Christian and ecclesiastical formation, these themes of the ethics of human life will have to find an appropriate place in the context of a global anthropology, and not be confined to the limit-questions of morality and law. I hope that a conversion to today’s centrality of the integral human ecology, or rather a harmonious and complete comprehension of the human condition, will I hope find valid support and propositional tone in your intellectual, civil and religious effort.
Global bioethics thus urges us towards the wisdom of a profound and objective discernment of the value of personal and community life, which must be preserved and promoted even in the most difficult conditions. We must also strongly state that, without the adequate support of a responsible human closeness, no purely juridical regulation and no technical aid can, on their own, guarantee conditions and relational contexts that correspond to the dignity of the person. The prospect of a globalization that, left only to its spontaneous dynamics, tends to increase and deepen inequalities, urges an ethical response in favor of justice. The attention to the social, economic, cultural and environmental factors that determine health is part of this commitment, and becomes a concrete way to realize “the right of every people to its own identity, independence and security, as well as the right to share, on a basis of equality and solidarity, in the goods intended for all” (John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Sollicitudo rei socialis, 21).
Finally, the culture of life must take a more serious look at the “serious question” of its ultimate destination. This means highlighting with greater clarity what directs the existence of man towards a horizon that surpasses him: every person is gratuitously called “to commune with God and share in His happiness. [The Church] further teaches that a hope related to the end of time does not diminish the importance of intervening duties but rather undergirds the acquittal of them with fresh incentives” (Second Vatican Ecumenical Council, Pastoral Constitution Gaudium et Spes, 21 ). We need to reflect more deeply on the ultimate destination of life, capable of restoring dignity and meaning to the mystery of its deepest and most sacred affections. The life of man, enchantingly beautiful and fragile to die, refers beyond itself: we are infinitely more than what we can do for ourselves. But human life is also incredibly tenacious, certainly for a mysterious grace that comes from above, in the audacity of its invocation of a justice and a definitive victory of love. And it is even capable – hoping against all hope – to sacrifice itself for it, unto the end. Recognizing and appreciating this fidelity and dedication to life arouses gratitude and responsibility in us, and encourages us to generously offer our knowledge and our experience to the whole human community. Christian wisdom must reopen with passion and boldness the thought of the destination of the human race to the life of God, which has promised to open to the love of life, beyond death, the infinite horizon of loving bodies of light, no longer with tears. And to amaze them eternally with the ever new enchantment of all things, “visible and invisible”, concealed in the womb of the Creator. Thank you.
© Libreria Editrice Vatican

#BreakingNews over 86 Killed and 50 Houses Burned as Fulani Herdsmen Attack area in Nigeria - Please Pray

Several News agencies have reported that at least 86 people have been killed in attacks in central Nigeria.  The attack, was carried out by armed Fulani herdsmen, on Saturday in Jos, the capital city of Plateau State, according to a police statement reports. "Eighty six persons all together were killed, six people injured, fifty houses burnt," police spokesman Terna Tyopev was quoted as saying in local media reports. Clashes between the Fulani herdsmen, who are mostly Muslims, and farmers, who are predominantly Christians, have occurred in Nigeria's Middle Belt since 2013 and are becoming more common.Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari posted a message on Twitter sending condolences to those affected and appealing for calm. "The grievous loss of lives and property arising from the killings in Plateau today is painful and regrettable," he said. "We will not rest until all murderers and criminal elements and their sponsors are incapacitated and brought to justice," Buhari said. Nigeria is already dealing with a Boko Haram insurgency, which has killed thousands of people and displaced millions over 10 years. Buhari, who is ethnically Fulani, has been accused of not doing enough to stop the violence and he is criticized on social media for his inaction.
Please Pray for Peace in Nigeria....

Wow Pope Francis makes Surprise Visit to Home of 200 Disabled with Hugs and Smiles - Video

Pope Francis turns an ordinary Sunday into an extraordinary surprise
Pope Francis makes a surprise visit Sunday afternoon to “Casale 4.5” on the outskirts of Rome—bringing his word and his hugs to about 200 disabled persons.
  By Sr Bernadette Mary Reis, fsp
We are used to Pope Francis’ Mercy Friday visits. This time, he turned up on Sunday at a Cooperative called “Durante e dopo di Noi. Casa OSA” (During and after Us. Associated Health Care Workers House). Pope Francis shook hands and briefly spoke with each of the 200 people present.
Luca Milanese, president of the group, explained to Pope Francis that “we have always taken to heart the happiness and well-being of those we assist—numbering about 50,000 in all of Italy today”. He continued to explain that the goal is that each person served will be able to improve their life, moving toward autonomy, with the help of their loved ones and health care workers. “ ‘Casa OSA’ is a project of life that stimulates the emotions, attitudes, relationships and the desires of those assisted and which sustains the families whose only desire is that of guaranteeing a dignified future to their children even beyond when they are no longer present”, Mr Milanese said.
Pope Francis said he was grateful for a “family day”, and encouraged those present saying “believe in dreams and in the beauty of life in union with the Lord”.

Who is the “Dopo di Noi” foundation?

The facility Pope Francis visited is part of a chain working with people with grave disabilities and their families to project long-term possibilities and assistance for disabled persons. The non-profit "Dopo di Noi" foundation was founded in 1984 to assist people with disabilities to develop a long-term plan in view of the future when family members can no longer provide care. It is part of a larger organization called Anffas which has dedicated itself for 60 years advocating for the rights of disabled persons.
Full Text Source Vatican News - Image Share from

Wow Sister Mariam spends 50 years of Silent Evangelization in Afghanistan with the Little Sisters of Jesus

ASIA/AFGHANISTAN - Sister Mariam: 50 years of silent evangelization with the Little Sisters of Jesus

Rome (Agenzia Fides) - "When you are on a mission in a land like Afghanistan, you cannot evangelize in a traditional manner. Over the years we would have liked to be bearers of the message of the Gospel, but we could do it only by setting a good example, trying to live properly as indicated in the Holy Scriptures". This is the testimony given to Agenzia Fides by Sister Mariam de Jesus, one of the Little Sisters of Jesus with nearly a 50-year-long experience in Afghanistan. 
The nuns of the Women's Institute founded in 1939 by Magdeleine de J├ęsus, following the path traced by Charles de Foucauld, arrived in Kabul for the first time in July 1954 and, from the following year, began working as a nurse at the government hospital in the Capital. Sr. Mariam reports: "Afghan people are famous for their hospitality. We were welcomed in an extraordinary way and, during the most difficult times of the war, we had many local friends ready to take risks to help us".
The Little Sisters, in fact, remained in the Afghan territory both during the Russian occupation of 1979, and during the civil war which started in 1992, moving from Kabul solely to work in the refugee camps of Jalalabad. Sister Mariam explains that, even after the arrival of the Taliban, in 1996, they chose to continue to serve in hospitals wearing the burqa to go unnoticed: "When they ask me if it was difficult to live with the war, I reply that it depended on the days. Sometimes I was very scared. But during all these years I felt strong because God never abandoned me. I learned to live day by day, and every minute of my life in Afghanistan was truly lived, thanks to God's protection".
Sister Mariam returned to Switzerland in 2016, when the Institute made the decision to stop its mission in Afghanistan due to the lack of young vocations: "It was very difficult to come back to life in the West, because the lifestyle is very different . In Kabul, people share, put the little that is available to be shared by everyone. Life is a little simpler and more natural: we always eat together, we do not worry about having a trendy phone. People live their own little life and, in many ways, are happier than us, despite the war".
Afghanistan, a 99% Muslim country, currently hosts a single parish, with headquarters in the Italian Embassy in Kabul, attended by about a hundred people, almost exclusively members of the international diplomatic community.
In the Capital the "Pro Bambini of Kabul" inter-congregational organization of religious women and the Sisters of Mother Teresa of Calcutta are operative. Moreover, in the country, social and educational works have been initiated by the Indian Jesuits of the Jesuit Refugees Service and other Christian-inspired organizations. (LF) (Full Text Share from Agenzia Fides, 25/6/2018)

Pope Francis "Only by changing education can we change the world. " FULL Official Text on Education

Consistory Hall
Monday, 25 June 2018

Dear Friends,
I offer a cordial welcome to those taking part in the Conference “To Educate is to Transform” promoted by the Gravissimum Educationis Foundation. I thank Cardinal Versaldi for his words of introduction and I am grateful to each of you for bringing the richness of your experiences in various sectors related to your personal and professional activities.
As you know, I established this Foundation on 28 October 2015, on the fiftieth anniversary of the Second Vatican Council’s Declaration Gravissimum Educationis, at the request of the Congregation for Catholic Education. By this foundation, the Church renews her commitment to Catholic education in step with the historical transformations of our time. The Foundation is in fact a response to the appeal made by the conciliar Declaration, which suggested that schools and universities cooperate so as better to face today’s challenges (cf. n. 12). This recommendation of the Council has developed over time, and can also be found in the recent Apostolic Constitution Veritatis Gaudium on Ecclesiastical Universities and Faculties, which speaks of “the urgent need for ‘networking’ between those institutions worldwide that cultivate and promote ecclesiastical studies” (Foreword, 4d) and, more broadly, among Catholic educational institutions.
Only by changing education can we change the world. To this end, I should like to offer you some suggestions:
1. First, it is important to “network”. Networking means uniting schools and universities for the sake of improving the work education and research, drawing upon everyone’s strong points for greater effectiveness on the intellectual and cultural levels.
Networking also means uniting the various branches of knowledge, the sciences and fields of study, in order to face complex challenges with an inter-disciplinary and cross-disciplinary approach, as recommended by Veritatis Gaudium (cf. n. 4c).
Networking means creating spaces for encounter and dialogue within educational institutions, and encouraging similar spaces outside our institutions, with people of other cultures, other traditions and different religions, so that a Christian humanism can consider the overall reality of humanity today.
Networking also means making the school an educating community where teachers and students are brought together not only by the teaching curriculum, but also by a curriculum of life and experience that can educate the different generations to mutual sharing. This is so important so as not to lose our roots!
Moreover, the challenges facing our human family today are global, in a more wide-ranging sense than is often thought. Catholic education is not limited to forming minds to a broader outlook, capable of embracing distant realities. It also recognized that mankind’s moral responsibility today does not just extend through space, but also through time, and that present choices have repercussions for future generations.
2. Another challenge facing education today is one that I pointed out in my Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium: “we must not allow ourselves to be robbed of hope!” (n. 86). With this appeal, I meant to encourage the men and women of our time to face social change optimistically, so that they can immerse themselves in realty with the light that radiates from the promise of Christian salvation.
We are called not to lose hope, because we must offer hope to the global world of today. “Globalizing hope” and “supporting the hopes of globalization” are basic commitments in the mission of Catholic education, as stated in the recent document of the Congregation for Catholic Education Educating to Fraternal Humanism (cf. nn. 18-19). A globalization bereft of hope or vision can easily be conditioned by economic interests, which are often far removed from a correct understanding of the common good, and which easily give rise to social tensions, economic conflicts and abuses of power. We need to give a soul to the global world through an intellectual and moral formation that can support the good things that globalization brings and correct the harmful ones.
These are important goals that can be attained by the growth of scientific research carried out by universities and present, too, in the mission of the Gravissimum Educationis Foundation Quality research, which looks to a horizon rich in challenges. Some of these challenges, as I noted in my Encyclical Laudato Si’, have to do with processes of global interdependence. The latter is, on the one hand, a beneficial historical force since it marks a greater cohesion among human beings; on the other, it gives rise to injustices and brings out the close relationship between grave forms of human poverty and the ecological crises of our world. The response is to be sought in developing and researching an integral ecology. Again, I should like to emphasize the economic challenge, based on researching better models of development corresponding to a more authentic understanding of human fulfilment and capable of correcting some of the perverse mechanisms of consumption and production. Then too, there is the political challenge: the power of technology is constantly expanding. One of its effects is to spread a throw-away culture that engulfs objects and persons without distinction. It entails a vision of man as a predator and the world in which we live as a resource to be despoiled at will.
Certainly, there is no shortage of work for academics and researchers engaged with the Gravissimum Educationis Foundation!
3. The work before you, with the support you give to innovative educational projects, must respect three essential criteria in order to be effective:
First, identity. This calls for consistency and continuity with the mission of schools, universities and research centres founded, promoted or accompanied by the Church and open to all. Those values are essential for following the way marked out by Christian civilization and by the Church’s mission of evangelization. In this way, you can help to indicate what paths to take, in order to give up-to-date answers to today’s problems, with a preferential regard for those who are most needy.
Another essential point is quality. This is the sure beacon that must shed light on every enterprise of study, research and education. It is necessary for achieving those “outstanding interdisciplinary centres” recommended by the Constitution Veritatis Gaudium (cf. n. 5) and which the Foundation Gravissimum Educationis aspires to support.
Then too, your work cannot overlook the goal of the common good. The common good is difficult to define in our societies characterized by the coexistence of citizens, groups and peoples belonging to different cultures, traditions and faiths. We must broaden the horizons of the common good, educating everyone to understand that we belong to one human family.
To fulfil your mission, therefore, you must lay its foundations in a way consistent with our Christian identity; establish means appropriate for the quality of study and research; and pursue goals in harmony with service to the common good.
A plan of thought and action based on these solid pillars will be able to contribute, through education, to building a future in which the dignity of the person and universal fraternity are global resources upon which every citizen of the world can draw.

I thank you for all that you can do with your support for the Foundation, and I encourage you to continue in this worthy and beneficial mission. Upon you, your colleagues and families, I cordially invoke the Lord’s abundant blessings. And I ask you, please, to remember to pray for me. Thank you.
Official Translation by - Source

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Monday June 25, 2018 - #Eucharist

Monday of the Twelfth Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 371 

Reading 12 KGS 17:5-8, 13-15A, 18

Shalmaneser, king of Assyria, occupied the whole land
and attacked Samaria, which he besieged for three years.
In the ninth year of Hoshea, king of Israel
the king of Assyria took Samaria,
and deported the children of Israel to Assyria,
setting them in Halah, at the Habor, a river of Gozan,
and the cities of the Medes.

This came about because the children of Israel sinned against the LORD,
their God, who had brought them up from the land of Egypt,
from under the domination of Pharaoh, king of Egypt,
and because they venerated other gods.
They followed the rites of the nations
whom the LORD had cleared out of the way of the children of Israel
and the kings of Israel whom they set up.

And though the LORD warned Israel and Judah
by every prophet and seer,
"Give up your evil ways and keep my commandments and statutes,
in accordance with the entire law which I enjoined on your fathers
and which I sent you by my servants the prophets,"
they did not listen, but were as stiff-necked as their fathers,
who had not believed in the LORD, their God.
They rejected his statutes,
the covenant which he had made with their fathers,
and the warnings which he had given them, till,
in his great anger against Israel,
the LORD put them away out of his sight.
Only the tribe of Judah was left.

Responsorial PsalmPS 60:3, 4-5, 12-13

R. (7b) Help us with your right hand, O Lord, and answer us.
O God, you have rejected us and broken our defenses;
you have been angry; rally us!
R. Help us with your right hand, O Lord, and answer us.
You have rocked the country and split it open;
repair the cracks in it, for it is tottering.
You have made your people feel hardships;
you have given us stupefying wine.
R. Help us with your right hand, O Lord, and answer us.
Have not you, O God, rejected us,
so that you go not forth, O God, with our armies?
Give us aid against the foe,
for worthless is the help of men.
R. Help us with your right hand, O Lord, and answer us.

AlleluiaHEB 4:12

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The word of God is living and effective,
able to discern reflections and thoughts of the heart.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMT 7:1-5

Jesus said to his disciples:
"Stop judging, that you may not be judged.
For as you judge, so will you be judged,
and the measure with which you measure will be measured out to you.
Why do you notice the splinter in your brother's eye,
but do not perceive the wooden beam in your own eye?
How can you say to your brother,
'Let me remove that splinter from your eye,'
while the wooden beam is in your eye?
You hypocrite, remove the wooden beam from your eye first;
then you will see clearly
to remove the splinter from your brother's eye."